Sesame Seed Output May Decline 25 Percent
Sesame production in 2011-12 may fall 25 per cent on account of low acreage and reduced yield, according to Shellac & Forest Products Export Promotion Council (Shefexil) estimates.Shefexil is a trade body sponsored by the Ministry of Commerce.
It conducted a survey of different stages of the sesame crop across India and the report shows production is likely to fall to 275,000 tonnes as against 360,000 tonnes in 2010-11. This is attributed to lower acreage, which has fallen 8.7 per cent, and a 18.9 per cent decline in yield.
According to the report, sowing declined from 1.31 million hectares in 2010-11 to 1.20 million hectares in 2011-12, while yield declined to 210 kg per hectare this year from 265 kg per hectare in the previous year. The fall in yield was mainly due to heavy and extended rainfall during the monsoon.
The acreage, production and yield have fallen in major sowing regions, including Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.
In Gujarat, most of the crop was damaged due to heavy rainfall, due to which farmers took up alternative crops like cotton, castorseed and groundnut. Farmers in Gujarat are more inclined to take up sesame in summer. In Rajasthan, crop performance was inconsistent. In Pali and Jodhpur, farmers have reported a good crop compared to last year.
In spite of lower production estimates, Shefexil and traders are hopeful of good exports. This year, during April-July, India’s sesame seed exports were 150,000 tonnes.